Server Resume Example & Writing Guide

A strong resume is essential for landing server jobs. But what should you include and how can you make yours stand out? This guide provides a professional server resume sample along with step-by-step writing tips. Learn what skills to feature, how to describe your experience, and ways to catch a hiring manager's eye. Get ready to boost your server job search.

A resume is like a menu for your skills and experience. If you're a server looking for a new job, your resume needs to present your best qualities to potential employers. But writing a resume can feel harder than memorizing daily specials. Where do you start? What should you include? How do you organize it?

Don't worry - this guide breaks it down into manageable steps. With a little time and effort, you can create a resume that shows off your serving abilities and helps you get your foot in the door. We'll walk through each section of a server resume, explaining what to include and showing you examples. By the end, you'll have the knowledge and confidence to craft your own impressive resume.

Getting hired as a server can be challenging, but a well-written resume is a powerful tool to help you stand out. Let's get started on putting your best foot forward and serving up a resume that will have hiring managers eager to take a bite.

Common Responsibilities Listed on Server Resumes

  • Monitoring server performance and ensuring optimal uptime
  • Configuring and maintaining server hardware and software components
  • Implementing security measures to protect servers from unauthorized access and cyber threats
  • Managing user accounts, permissions, and access controls
  • Performing server backups and data recovery procedures
  • Installing and updating server operating systems, applications, and software patches
  • Troubleshooting and resolving server-related issues and errors
  • Optimizing server performance by tuning configurations and allocating resources
  • Coordinating with network administrators and other IT teams for seamless integration
  • Documenting server configurations, procedures, and maintenance activities

How to write a Resume Summary

The summary or objective section of a resume often sits at the very top, the spotlighted corner of the page that initially greets a hiring manager. This short introduction plays a critical role in setting the tone for your resume, framing the rest of your details through a particular lens. Bearing this in mind, imbuing yours with conciseness and clarity is vital.

Key Aspects of a Strong Resume Summary/Objective

Think about your role as a server and the skills it involves. Focus firstly on your responsibility to cater to customers' needs. This could mean stellar communication skills, a high degree of patience, or keen attention to detail. You're essentially a diplomat, bridging the kitchen and the patron.

Another key aspect is your deep knowledge of the myriad of items on the menu. As a server, you're an expert in your establishment's offerings and introduce people to it.

Also consider your ability to work well under pressure. A busy restaurant at peak times can turn into a hotbed of sudden demands and real-time problem-solving. Effectiveness in such environments signifies valuable adaptability and resilience.

Building Your Summary/Objective

Starting with a firm grasp of these aspects, you are set to construct your summary. Begin with a succinct, truthful statement about your professional self. Here's where you encompass your years of industry experience and primary skill sets.

Avoid tailoring this section too heavily towards the job description. The summary or objective should center around your attributes as a server, not necessarily your eligibility for a specific job.

Remember, your role as a server equips you with a diverse set of skills that can suit various work environments, not all necessarily confined to the restaurant industry.

Balancing Brevity and Detail

It is essential to maintain a balance between brevity and detail. Providing too much detail can lose the reader's interest, and being too brief might limit the understanding of your skill set. Make every word count; it's not about length but about delivering an impact.

Avoid jargon or buzzwords and take on a more authentic voice. By employing a straightforward but refined language, your summary can be readily understood and appreciated.

Ensuring Accuracy and Authenticity

Lastly, accuracy and authenticity are paramount. Your summary should absolutely be a representation of the real you, not an idealized fictional server. Any discrepancies between your representations and verifiable details might erode trust. Therefore, stay truthful to achieve an authentic, relatable summary.

To summarize, a resume summary/objective should reflect your critical skills and strengths, maintain a balance between briefness and detail, and highlight your authentic persona. It sets the stage for your resume, acquainting the hiring manager with your professional identity.

Strong Summaries

  • Experienced Server with strong knowledge on customer service standards and proficiency in popular POS software. Known for strong servings skills, professionalism and ability to develop relationships with regular customers through personable and thoughtful service.
  • Detail-orientated Server with 5+ years in the restaurant industry. Expert in managing large sections in fast-paced environments while upholding top-quality service standards. Trained in mixology and knowledgeable about local craft beer scene.
  • Diligent Server with excellent multitasking abilities and memory retention. Over seven years in high-class dining environments with focus on providing exemplary guest experiences. Certified in wine, craft beer, and spirits knowledge.
  • Enthusiastic Server with a keen eye for detail and a passion for food and beverage pairings. Regularly recognized for impeccable service standards, dexterity in handling payments and giving change, and ability to remember customer preferences.

Why these are strong?

These examples follow good practices as they provide a concise summary of the candidate's skills and experiences related to serving. They identify specific attributes and experiences, such as proficiency in POS software, expertise in managing large sections, certifications, and memory retention. This gives a potential employer a quick understanding of the candidate's strengths and suitability for the server position. Moreover, they avoid generic phrases and offer unique insights into each candidate's professional background.

Weak Summaries

  • I've worked at bunch of places doing server stuff. I know how to do the job. No problems.
  • I'm a server who loves eating more than serving. Looking for a chance to eat at new places.
  • Server with experience. Done it for a long time now, just need a place to work and pass the time.
  • I'm just looking for a job. Nothing specific, but I can be a server. It doesn't really matter to me.
  • I've been a server for 5 years and I hate it. Hope someone can give me a job out of pity.

Why these are weak?

The above are poor examples for a 'Professional Summary' section of a Server resume due to several reasons. All these examples lack professionalism and do not highlight the candidate's skills or experiences. They also either trivialize the job ('I know how to do the job. No problems.'), avoid talking about their server experience ('I'm just looking for a job.') or mention disinterest towards the job ('I've been a server for 5 years and I hate it.'). Even humor or casualness ('I'm a server who loves eating more than serving.') if inappropriate, it can be perceived negatively. Resumes are often the first impression a potential employer has of a candidate, thus, it is imperative to be positive, professional and clearly articulate relevant expertise and experiences.

Showcase your Work Experience

Writing the Work Experience section on your resume as a Server might seem challenging, but it's an important step that can strengthen your application. This vital part of your resume gives you an avenue to highlight practical skills and experience that you have acquired, helping potential employers understand how you can bring value to their organization.

Let's look at how to add maximum weight to your resume through an optimized Work Experience section.

Understanding the Role of the Server

Firstly, it's essential to understand the role you are applying for. As a Server, some primary responsibilities include providing excellent customer service, handling financial transactions, taking orders, and maintaining cleanliness. Designed to fit these essential duties, your work experience should demonstrate targeted capabilities.

Action Verbs and Quantifying Achievements

Begin each sentence with powerful action verbs such as 'achieved', 'improved', 'increased', or 'maintained'. By using these verbs, you're able to present your previous roles with energy and vigour.

Moreover, wherever possible, try to quantify your achievements. If you increased customer satisfaction scores or helped your restaurant achieve record sales, mention these figures. This method gives prospective employers a tangible measure of your positive impact in past roles.

Expert Tip

Quantify your achievements and impact using concrete numbers, metrics, and percentages to demonstrate the value you brought to your previous roles.

Speaking the Employer's Language

Understanding the language of the employer is key to writing a persuasive Work Experience section. This involves aligning your skill wording with the terms used in the job description. However, make sure to be truthful and only mention skills you already possess.

Relevant and Recent Experience

Prioritize consideration of the most relevant and recent experiences first. Even if you haven't been a Server your entire life, any experience with customer service, cash handling, or food service can benefit your resume.

Detail Level

Be careful with the detail level: less important tasks such as setting tables or refilling condiments don't need to be mentioned unless essential for the position. Instead, concentrate on duties that show problem solving, leadership, or exceptional customer service.

Remember, the Work Experience section speaks volume about your practical skills and personality than any other part of the resume, and therefore requires a precise, truthful, and well-structured approach. By understanding the role's duties, using action verbs and quantifiable achievements, aligning your wording with the job description, and prioritizing relevance and recency, you can optimize the Work Experience section of your Server resume.

Strong Experiences

  • Managed orders and delivered food for multiple tables during high-traffic hours to ensure customer satisfaction
  • Provided top-notch customer service, responding to inquiries, and resolving problems promptly
  • Maintained detailed knowledge of menu items to offer advice and recommendations based on customer preferences
  • Worked closely with kitchen staff to ensure timely delivery of orders
  • Demonstrated strong understanding of restaurant operations, including cleaning and maintenance procedures

Why these are strong?

These examples are good because they exhibit the potential candidate's ability to handle multiple tasks, their strong emphasis on customer service, and their knowledge about their role and the overall restaurant operations. They are action-specific and showcase a level of responsibility and initiative, which would be considered a good practice when writing a resume. These bullet points are also quantifiable and clear, making them more impactful and easy to read.

Weak Experiences

  • Waitress duties: Served food, cleaned tables, took orders, took payments
  • Server: Took Orders, Waited on Customers, Cleared Tables
  • Responsibilities: Order taking, serving food, attending to customer complaints

Why these are weak?

These examples are bad practices for the bullet points in a Server resume work experience section due to multiple reasons. First, they are transactional and simply list tasks without detailing any accomplishments, learning, or skills demonstrated. Good bullet points should showcase the impact you had in your role, not just list out your duties. Second, they lack specificity - use of descriptive action verbs, quantification or evidence of success/responsibility could significantly enhance the impact. An optimal bullet point would also aim to link the server's actions to positive business outcomes, such as customer satisfaction levels, business efficiency, or sales revenue. Lastly, these bad examples do not vary the words used to start each bullet point. Using different action verbs at the beginning of each bullet point can make the list more engaging and relevant to the employer.

Skills, Keywords & ATS Tips

When you apply for a server job, there are a lot of special skills you must possess to succeed. These skills fall into two main categories: hard skills and soft skills. Having a well-rounded mix of both is vital on your resume. A well-balanced resume helps you stand out from the crowd and communicates to employers that you can handle the various aspects of the job.

Hard Skills on a Server Resume

Hard skills are specific, trainable abilities that can be defined and measured. For servers, these might include food handling certifications, accurate cash handling, or knowledge of a specific Point of Sale (POS) system. These are job-specific and show an employer that you have the technical skills needed to do the job right.

Soft Skills on a Server Resume

Soft skills, on the other hand, are less measurable but equally important. These are character traits or interpersonal skills that shape how you work, like empathy, communication, flexibility, or teamwork. For a server, these can show you're capable of providing high-quality customer service—even under pressure.

The Link: ATS, Keywords, and Matching Skills

Now, you might ask, "What do these skills have to do with keywords and the Applicant Tracking System (ATS)?" Good question. ATS is a software used by many employers to sort and analyze resumes. It scans your document, looking for specific keywords to decide if you're a suitable match for the job.

The connection between skills and keywords is that the job-specific skills (especially hard skills), are often the keywords an ATS is looking for. They're usually mentioned in the job description. So carefully read the job posting and match your skills with what's specified there. By doing this, you increase the chances of your resume getting through the ATS and being noticed by the hiring manager.

Just remember, while hard skills may get your foot in the door, it's the combination of both hard and soft skills that will truly make you a valuable server. So be sure to highlight both on your resume. This balanced blend will show potential employers that you're not only qualified but also a well-rounded candidate for the job.

Top Hard & Soft Skills for Full Stack Developers

Hard Skills

  • Food safety
  • Menu knowledge
  • Wine pairing
  • POS system
  • Table setting
  • Order accuracy
  • Up-selling
  • Customer service
  • Time management
  • Teamwork
  • Problem-solving
  • Attention to detail
  • Communication
  • Multi-tasking
  • Knowledge of spirits
  • Soft Skills

  • Empathy
  • Patience
  • Adaptability
  • Stress management
  • Positive attitude
  • Conflict resolution
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Active listening
  • Team player
  • Flexibility
  • Customer focus
  • Professionalism
  • Reliability
  • Communication
  • Time management
  • Top Action Verbs

    Use action verbs to highlight achievements and responsibilities on your resume.

  • Served
  • Recommended
  • Assisted
  • Prepared
  • Cleaned
  • Communicated
  • Listened
  • Collaborated
  • Advised
  • Organized
  • Managed
  • Resolved
  • Welcomed
  • Presented
  • Promoted
  • Upsold
  • Delivered
  • Coordinated
  • Handled
  • Responded
  • Checked
  • Explained
  • Engaged
  • Anticipated
  • Maintained
  • Greeted
  • Processed
  • Verified
  • Escorted
  • Followed up
  • Confirmed
  • Plated
  • Balanced
  • Replenished
  • Packaged
  • Stocked
  • Inspected
  • Calculated
  • Education

    Adding education and certification details to your resume is easily achievable by naming a section as "Education" or "Certifications". In this section, list your qualifications starting with the most recent one. Mention the name of the degree/diploma/certificate, institution's name, and the year of completion. If you're a server with relevant certifications, highlight these in your "Certifications" section. This way, prospective employers can easily scan your qualifications and find those needed for the job. Keep it short, clear, and precise.

    Resume FAQs for Servers


    What is the ideal resume format for a Server Resume?


    The most recommended format for a Server Resume is the reverse-chronological format. This format highlights your work experience in a clear and organized manner, starting with your most recent job and working backwards. It allows you to showcase your relevant server-related skills and accomplishments effectively.


    How long should a Server Resume be?


    A Server Resume should typically be one page in length. However, if you have extensive experience or certifications relevant to the server role, it can extend to two pages. The key is to be concise and highlight only the most relevant information that demonstrates your qualifications for the server position.


    What are the essential sections to include in a Server Resume?


    The essential sections to include in a Server Resume are: a professional summary or objective statement, work experience, relevant skills (such as technical skills, customer service skills, and language proficiency), certifications or licenses (if applicable), and education. You may also include additional sections like awards, volunteer work, or professional memberships if they are relevant to the server role.


    How can I make my Server Resume stand out?


    To make your Server Resume stand out, focus on quantifying your achievements and using specific examples that demonstrate your skills and impact in previous server roles. Highlight any specialized training or certifications you have obtained, as well as any relevant language proficiency. Additionally, tailor your resume to the specific job posting by incorporating keywords from the job description.

    Server Resume Example

    As a Server, you take orders, serve food and beverages promptly, and deliver exceptional customer service. When writing a Server resume, highlight experience thriving in fast-paced environments, strong communication and interpersonal skills, and meticulous attention to detail. Include any relevant certifications like food handling/safety. Use action verbs to describe responsibilities like "Greeted guests warmly," "Processed orders accurately," and "Maintained spotless dining areas." Convey your ability to multitask and provide friendly, efficient service.

    Joel Turner
    (224) 743-3781

    Highly motivated and personable server with over 6 years of experience in fast-paced, high-end dining establishments. Consistently praised for exceptional customer service, attention to detail, and ability to anticipate guest needs. Skilled in menu knowledge, wine pairing, and creating memorable dining experiences. Thrives in team-oriented environments and excels under pressure.

    Work Experience
    Lead Server
    06/2021 - Present
    Eleven Madison Park
    • Mentored and trained a team of 12 servers, ensuring consistent high-quality service and guest satisfaction.
    • Collaborated with the sommelier to develop and implement a new wine pairing program, increasing wine sales by 25%.
    • Received Employee of the Month award three times for outstanding performance and dedication.
    • Assisted in the planning and execution of private dining events for high-profile clients.
    • Maintained a deep understanding of the restaurant's seasonal menu offerings, ingredients, and preparation techniques.
    02/2019 - 05/2021
    • Provided exceptional service to an average of 50 guests per shift in a Michelin-starred restaurant.
    • Developed a keen understanding of wine and food pairings, often recommending selections to enhance the dining experience.
    • Assisted in the training and onboarding of new servers, fostering a supportive and collaborative team environment.
    • Maintained a spotless service area and consistently received positive feedback from guests on cleanliness and organization.
    • Demonstrated flexibility and adaptability in managing multiple tasks and priorities in a fast-paced environment.
    Server Assistant
    08/2017 - 01/2019
    • Supported a team of servers in a three-Michelin-starred restaurant, ensuring seamless service and guest satisfaction.
    • Developed a thorough understanding of the restaurant's innovative and avant-garde menu offerings.
    • Assisted in the setup and breakdown of the dining room, maintaining a pristine and inviting environment.
    • Demonstrated a strong work ethic and willingness to go above and beyond to support the team and enhance the guest experience.
    • Received regular praise from management for consistency, reliability, and positive attitude.
  • Fine dining service
  • Wine knowledge
  • Food and beverage pairing
  • Guest relations
  • Problem-solving
  • Attention to detail
  • Time management
  • Teamwork
  • Conflict resolution
  • Adaptability
  • Multitasking
  • Point of Sale (POS) systems
  • Food safety and sanitation
  • Menu memorization
  • Upselling techniques
  • Education
    Bachelor of Arts in Hospitality Management
    08/2013 - 05/2017
    Cornell University, Ithaca, NY